What’s That Wild Thing Under Your Tree?

by Franke James

Photo-illustration by Franke James featuring WWF lynx

Are you thinking of wild animals needing shelter at this time of year? For most people, it’s not top of mind…

Luckily, WWF-Canada has found a clever way to pull at our heart strings, protect wildlife and give a cute, meaningful gift. Just in time for the holiday season, they are arranging adoptions for species at risk. Their Wildlife Adoption Program is symbolic — which is probably a good thing as a cute, stuffed toy lynx is much cuddlier (and safer) than a real one!

“Canada is the proud home of some spectacular species, but sadly, some of them are at risk. With the gift of a symbolic adoption, you could help preserve Canada’s rich and diverse wildlife population. Your gift would help WWF protect key habitats, conserve wildlife populations and provide a healthier natural world for us all.”

WWF-Canada has 20 species to choose from, from Canada and around the world. Reading about the animal you’ve adopted is a great way to create an emotional bond between the animals at risk and gift recipients of all ages. And it’s a wonderful way to contribute towards a living planet. See 5 of the 20 adoptable animal species below…

These solitary felines can range in size from that of a small housecat to being 6 times larger. The lynx population is heavily dependent on the availability of its prey. With development depleting its primary source of prey, it is increasingly difficult for these cats to hunt.

Caribou are an ancient member of the deer family with a population that is spread widely across Canada. Fragmentation and conversion threaten caribou habitats and have seen its populations greatly diminished.

Grizzly Bear
This large and notably strong land mammal is often thought to be a carnivore. The grizzly is however an omnivore with up to 85% of its diet made up of roots and berries. Habitat loss due to human encroachment poses a large threat to grizzly populations.

Snow Leopard
This strikingly beautiful and elusive creature has a soft fur, a tail almost as long as its body, and is one of the members of the feline family that does not roar. Sadly, the snow leopard population has been greatly diminished because of illegal hunting and habitat loss.

Arctic Fox
Although the arctic fox has evolved to be able to withstand living in some of the most frigid extremes on this planet, its population is threatened by climate change. Melting sea ice due to climate change has limited the arctic fox’s access to its food supply while industrial development disturbs its natural habitat.

Go to WWF-Canada to see all the animals available for adoption.

WWF-Canada’s symbolic wildlife adoptions are available with free shipping for pre-Christmas delivery until December 17 in Canada. Orders can be placed at or 1-800-26-PANDA (1-800-267-2632).

Funds from the adoptions are used to fight major threats like climate change and animal poaching, and to support WWF’s conservation efforts across Canada.

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